WEST LIMERICK TOASTMASTERS: Toastmasters is a non-profit educational corporation with headquarters in the US. Its mission is to improve the communication and leadership skills of its members. It has approx. 180,000 members in 54 countries from Australia to Malaysia to South Africa and everywhere in between. Clubs are divided up into areas, then divisions then districts and we are one of three clubs in Area 36, Division A, District 71. The other two clubs are Tralee and Killarney. The three clubs meet each month from September to May in a safe, friendly, fun filled and affirming environment.

West Limerick Toastmasters will be back on Wednesday, September 3 next. Just in time for those who are planning their winter programme and who want to do something that will add value to their lives and which develops self-confidence and increases self-esteem. As well, of course, Toastmasters will get you out of the house, into a group where fun and laughter is the order of the day and where you’ll make new friends. People are welcome to attend meetings as guests and will not be called upon to speak until they decide if they wish to join up. Every meeting consists of a topics session where members discuss anything – apart from sex, religion and politics – these subjects are considered to be too divisive (!). This is then followed by three prepared speeches each night, with experienced members giving speeches of between 4-7 minutes length. These are then evaluated by a nominated evaluator from the group thus increasing the learning experience for everyone. Members also share roles at the top table and so develop skills in chairing meetings and preparing agendas. The experience of being a member of Toastmasters enables people to become more involved in other organisations, join the debate at public meetings, speak up at parent/teacher conferences, get involved in community activism and so much more. An added benefit of joining Toastmasters is the emphasis that there is on timekeeping with meetings starting at 8.30pm sharp and people asked to be in situ by 8.15pm at the latest. There will be a break for tea or coffee mid-way which allows plenty of time for socialising and the meeting will finish at 10.30pm sharp. Your membership will enable you learn how to put your thoughts together, how to speak concisely and clearly, you learn the uses of body language, how to project your voice, the value of making eye contact – all skills that are necessary in everyday life as well as in work. Members of West Limerick Toastmasters Toastmasters come from all walks of life and include farmers, unemployed people, students over 18, retired people, nurses, teachers and many more. Meetings take place in the Desmond Complex each month from September to May. So, decide to come to the first meeting of the new season – it’s a decision that could be life changing for you. Further information from Charles 087 7972855. The Tralee club meet in O’Donnells Bar and Restaurant, Mounthawk on the first and third Mondays of the month with meetings from 8.00– 10.00 pm. For further information contact Celine on 066 7125364. Finally Killarney meets on the second and fourth Tuesday of each month from 8.30pm – 10.30pm at the Malton Hotel and the contact number for further information is Bernadette 0877546984.